Friday, December 13, 2013

Cotton Fields

December 12, 2013

Dear Family

We are adjusting more each week and finally feel like this is home.  We have been out trying to find the homes of the members and less active members.  We have the addresses and even some directions, but they mostly live out of our little town and winding little roads.  One day it seemed like we were just going into the woods, farther and farther and then all of a sudden there was a lovely home.  Of course no one was home, but we left an invitation to our Branch Christmas Gathering.  A couple of the families did come, so it was not a wasted effort and we saw some beautiful county.  Since we arrived in Birmingham on November 13, we have 1900 miles on our car.  On this little trip, we came across a field of cotton.  I got so excited.  We pulled over and I took a few pictures and even picked some cotton.  I’m sure the harvest season is well past as the stocks were dried and brown, but the cotton is soft and smooth.  I hope I am here to see the fields when they are white with the cotton blossoms.

On Thursday we went over to Montgomery AL to see an Inter-Faith Nativity Program. It is sponsored by several different faiths, but held in the LDS Stake Center.  There were more than 1,000 different nativities brought by members of our, members of other churches and many from the military personnel at a near by military base.  The military people brought nativities that they had collected during their different deployments.  I’ll try to send a couple of pictures.  There were some very tiny delicate ones, wood carved ones, very modern ones, and very antique ones, even one made of legos and two made of white chocolate. It was a wonderful experience.  Such a wonderful start to our Christmas Celebration.
Sunday we had our Branch Christmas Gathering.  The primary presented a darling little Christmas talent program, then we had a pot luck dinner.  Just like at home, we had way more food than people and it was all delicious food, including Fried Okra and Corn bread Pie.  Then we watched the First Presidencies Christmas Devotional.  Another wonderful evening.
Tuesday, we went up to the Temple in Birmingham.  It was the Temple Day for the Young Missionaries.  We picked up two of our young Elders in Selma and drove up. 
It was a grey morning, but we were all excited to meet everyone at the temple.
As you can see from our pictures that the sun came out and it was a beautiful day in Birmingham.  Much like the days in Oregon when it had been so grey and gloomy and then the sun came out and there wasn’t a more beautiful sky anywhere.
We thank you for your texts...emails...Facebook (we are trying)...letters and calls.It has really helped us a lot. 
We check the temperature for Centerville and for Portland every day as well as for our little Camden.  We are sorry you having such a cold spell.  Hope you can keep warm and watch out for each other.  We love each of you dearly.  Love Elder and Sister Hepworth, aka mom and dad, grandma and grandpa.

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